There is a Portuguese saying that lunch takes two hours: one for eating and one hour for talking. The Portuguese love to eat and they love to share the experience with others. Through the recipes and stories in these Portuguese cookbooks you’ll discover the food of one of the great undiscovered culinary centres of Europe whether you’re planning a trip to Portugal or cooking at home.
The Taste of Portugal
One of the first really comprehensive Portuguese cookbooks in English several editions have since been published and it is still going strong. Edite was born in Portugal, but has spent most of her life living in Portugal where she worked for the media.
In this authoritative book Edite includes traditional Portuguese recipes to suit all tastes and occasions. She gives a wonderfully rounded picture of Portuguese cuisine including recipes suitable for vegetarians. She also adds some interesting background information and commentry that put the food into its historical and cultural context. So even if you do not dash immediately into the kitchen to cook Portuguese style, the book will provide a good read.
My Lisbon: A Cookbook from Portugal’s City of Light
This has to be one of the best Portuguese cookbooks, written by one of Portugal’s most famous chefs, Nuno Mendes. He was born in Lisbon and grew up with a passion for travel and food cultures. He has trianed and worked in some of the best kitchens in the world. In this book he goes back to his roots and celebrates the cuisine that first inspired him. He invites you to experience his favourite places and the amazing food you will discover there.
Via evocative essays and luminous photography Nuno takes you through a typical day in Lisbon sharing recipes inspired by the dishes he loves. For the lunch you might sample some typical fish dishes: grilled sardines with green pepper salad or octopus with cripsy edges drizzled with a garlic and coriander piso. Dinner menu includes dishes like slow-baked lamb chanfana. His section on petiscos (small dishes for sharing ) is more creative than you’d find in the average tasca ( small local restaurant). He also introduces his most cherished pastéis (pastries) from among the hundreds made in Portugal. You’ll discover his recipe for pasteis da nata, the custard tarts for which Lisbon is so famous.
Related: Famous Portuguese Authors
My Portugal Recipes & Stories
My Portugal takes the reader on an unforgettable journey of Portugal with delicious recipes and stunning photographs. The author George Mendes is a first-generation Portuguese-American chef and owner of the Michelin-starred Aldea. He has been honing his skill for 20 years training with some of the best chefs in the world.
The 125 recipes and stories in his Portuguese cookbook range from childhood favourites to his insider’s guide to Portugal’s regional cuisines. You’ll be treated to his signature Duck Rice, Garlic Seared Shrimp, and his take on classic Portuguese dishes such as Bacalhau à Gomes de Sá (Salt Cod, Potato and Egg Casserole)
Eating Á La Porto
Chef Hélio Loureiro is one of the great Porto chefs with more than 30 years experience. His cookbook opens the door to a fantastic journey into the flavours of Porto. He brings together the most traditional dishes and makes them accessible to everyone.
Among the traditional Portuguese recipes you’ll find Tripas à Moda do Porto, a hearty stew not for the faint hearted. In his fish section you’ll discover recipes such as fillets of hake with shrimp rice. The desserts are mouth-watering. You’ll be treated to his recipe for Francesinha a typical sandwich from Porto with a special signature sauce. Each recipe is beautifully illustrated with photographs. In a final section he invites eight of Porto’s most prominent chefs to contribute their favourite recipe.
Traditional Portuguese Cooking
This Portuguese cookbook is a real treasure, the result of 20 years of exhaustive research by Maria de Lurdes Modesto. Over 800 traditional Portuguese recipes including authentic recipes from all the regions. It is not always available for purchase so grab a copy if you can.
Have you got a favourite Portuguese cookbook? Please tell us about it in the comments section below. We’d love to hear from you.